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Wednesday December 08, 2021

Furnace oil shortfall affecting city’s power supply: KE

June 04, 2020

A rapid rise in temperatures and increased industrial and commercial activities due to the easing of the lockdown have caused the power demand to peak at 3,200 megawatts, said a statement issued on Wednesday.

It said that while the K-Electric is maximising its power generation in line with its full commitment to meeting Karachi’s rising power demand, it is facing challenges on account of furnace oil shortfall. This shortfall is compromising generation capability at K-Electric’s furnace-oil fired 1250 MW Bin Qasim Power Station – 1 (BQPS -1), according to the statement.

According to the spokesperson for the power utility, the K-Electric’s daily furnace oil requirement is close to 4,500 metric tonnes per day, while at present we are receiving only around 500 MT per day. Currently, there are pending orders of close to 13,500 MT furnace oil, which have not yet been supplied.

“This is creating difficulties in meeting the power demand, which may necessitate load-management even in exempted areas to meet the shortfall between supply and demand.” This situation, the KE regretted, had caused its customers inconvenience. It appealed for their support through energy conservation measures. “We are in contact with the relevant authorities to ensure a swift resolution to this issue in the best interests of the people of Karachi.”

Customer care centres

The K-Electric said in another statement it is cognizant of the fact that the fight against the COVID-19 threat is still ongoing, but as the city and the country gradually ease back towards normal business, the power utility has resumed operations across all spheres of its operations.

Critical installations such as power plants and load dispatch centres and field teams have already been operating under strict guidelines during the COVID-19 pandemic, and now Customer Care Centers (CCC) which, until now were offering selected services at some locations only, will also resume and offer full scale of services to customers. This will include all billing related complaints as well as backlog of new connections and MNCV related issues. CCCs will be open from 9am to 3pm from Monday through Thursday, from 9am to 12:30pm on Friday and 9am to 1pm on Saturday.

“Customer care centres will adhere to healthcare controls as per internal and external guidelines to help contain the spread of the virus. KE staff at these sites will be required to work on rotational basis and their safety will be ensured through daily self-health checks, and by ensuring physical distancing measures. Strict use of personal protective equipment and cleaning procedures in line with KE healthcare guidelines will also be ensured at locations where required. Guidelines for customers will be available at all CCCs and persons exhibiting cold or flu-like symptoms or high temperature will not be allowed.”

According to a KE spokesperson said, “Resumption of the KE customer care centers is an important step to facilitate KE customers in spite of the on-going COVID-19 pandemic. However, to reduce the threat of the virus spread, strict SOPs will be observed at all KE centres in line with internal and external healthcare guidelines including use of hand sanitizers, temperature screening at entry points, use of face masks and practicing social distancing etc. In their broad interest, KE customers are however advised to visit the centers only if it is really important for them and after they have exhausted all other options of reaching out to the company through digital and virtual means.” The K-Electric has expanded the number of touch points and customers may get in touch with the power utility by dialing the 118 call center, via SMS at 8119, or through its social media platforms and the KE Live app. KE has also made available a wide range of e-payment options such as mobile banking, and Easy Paisa for bill payment.